The German national ice hockey team narrowly missed out on winning the group at the World Cup in Finland, but celebrated the best preliminary round result in their history.

The team of national coach Toni Söderholm, which already qualified early for the knockout stage, lost to their eternal rival Switzerland in the last preliminary round game 3:4 (2:1, 0:2, 1:0, 0:0, 0:1) after a penalty shootout.

As a result, Germany, with 16 points, as second in group in the round of eight, meets third in group B, either the twelve-time world champion Czech Republic or the current Olympic champion Finland.

Kai Wissmann (12th), Stefan Loibl (16th) and Matthias Plachta (48th) scored the goals for selection of the German Ice Hockey Federation (DEB).

Andres Ambühl (2nd), Pius Suter (22nd) and Denis Malgin (39th) scored for Switzerland, in the penalty shootout Damian Riat ensured the decision in favor of the Swiss, who thus won all seven preliminary round games and with 20 points the maximum result narrowly missed out of 21.

At last year's World Cup in Riga, Germany beat Switzerland 3-2 after a penalty shoot-out in the quarter-finals and ended up fourth.

At the current World Cup in Helsinki, the German team has won five games in a row for the first time in their World Cup history.

The only defeat in the previous six World Cup matches in the venerable "Helsingin Jäähalli" was the DEB team's 3:5 start against Canada.

Germany had previously achieved their best preliminary round result with 15 points in Kosice/Slovakia with five wins in 2019.

In 2011 and 1933, the DEB selection had won the preliminary round in significantly smaller groups, but then there were other rounds of points that were never finished first.